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Florence trustee candidates in violation of campaign laws

 

I have filed a formal complaint against Bill Hester, Colby Reynolds and Kevin O’Brien of Florence for two illegal campaign activities. I have sent a formal complaint to the Commissioner of Political Practices. The voters should know that Florence-Carlton School District Trustee candidates are in violation of Montana State Law.

Earlier this month thousands of residents in the Florence-Carlton School District received an anonymous political communication asking us to support Colby Reynolds and Bill Hester. On April 30th I started seeing their anonymous yard signs popping up as well.

These political communications are in violation of Montana Code 13-35-225: Election materials not to be anonymous — statement of accuracy. (1) All communications advocating the success or defeat of a candidate, political party, or ballot issue through any broadcasting station, newspaper, magazine, outdoor advertising facility, direct mailing, poster, handbill, bumper sticker, internet website, or other form of general political advertising must clearly and conspicuously include the attribution “paid for by” followed by the name and address of the person who made or financed the expenditure for the communication. When a candidate or a candidate’s campaign finances the expenditure, the attribution must be the name and the address of the candidate or the candidate’s campaign. In the case of a political committee, the attribution must be the name of the committee, the name of the committee treasurer, and the address of the committee or the committee treasurer.

After quite a bit of research it was finally determined that this piece was paid for by the two candidates, Bill Hester and Colby Reynolds, and Kevin O’Brien, all of Florence.

No one should have to dig to know the truth about who is financing these two candidates. This is what the phrase “Dark Money” is all about. Avoiding disclosure is not honest nor is it transparent. Voters should not be “in the dark” about who is a contributing to a candidate’s campaign. Candidates for any political office should strive to follow the law.

If you are going to run for a political office you should know the rules and follow them. If candidates don’t do their homework on something as simple as this, how do we trust them to on matters of safety and funding of our schools?

Kristin Page-Nei

Florence

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